A new report claims the remunerative remunerations for doctors in India have increased by 200 per cent over the past five years.
According to a report by the Indian Medical Association (IMA), there are now a total of 1,821 medical students in India and more than 10,000 doctors, with the average salary of the medical students ranging from Rs 5,000 to Rs 9,000 per month.
According for the first time, the IMA has also highlighted the medical profession’s inability to meet basic living costs and said they have to pay more money to maintain quality of life.
The IMA also said that the salaries of doctors in the country are increasing by more than 50 per cent annually.
The report by The Times of India and the Medical Research Council of India (MRCI) said that salaries in the Indian medical profession have been growing at a faster rate than in any other country in the world.
The study has also identified three factors that are driving the increase in remunerated salary of medical students: an ageing population, a lack of job opportunities, and the increasing costs of living in India.
Dr Suresh Prasad, chairman of the Institute of Medical Education, Health and Family Sciences at the University of Rajasthan, said that there are a lot of reasons behind the increasing remunerating salary of doctors.
Dr Prasac told NDTV that medical education and training is the main reason why the salary is rising.
He said that although doctors in particular have been getting higher salaries for the past few years, the average compensation is increasing by an average of 20 per cent per year.
Dr Vasant Sankaran, president of the National Medical Federation, a trade union that represents more than 200,000 medical professionals, said the increased remunerateness of doctors also contributes to the higher inflation of health insurance in the state.
Dr. Sankaran said that for doctors to maintain their salaries, they have been forced to accept lower salaries, which are then paid to other employees in the same office.
Dr Sudipta Sharma, president and founder of the All India Medical Students Association (AIMSA), told NDtv that this increase in salaries is mainly due to the fact that more and more doctors are opting for private hospitals and private practices to help pay for their medical fees.
Dr Sharma said that this trend has been observed in many other countries including France, Germany, Italy, the United States and China.
The increase in pay is also impacting the education of the doctors, she said.
Dr Chandan Singh, chief executive officer of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), said that while salaries are rising, the pay of doctors has also been declining.
“The number of doctors who are earning less than Rs 10,500 per month is increasing at a much faster rate compared to the previous five years,” he told NDtelevision.
Dr Singh said that even doctors who earn over Rs 50,000 in salary are finding it difficult to keep their salaries in check as they are now spending more on healthcare.
Dr Sandeep Kumar, president, National Medical Education and Training Federation, said this increase is due to a number of factors.
“Many doctors are not able to afford private healthcare facilities.
For instance, private hospitals are only allowed to offer a single course in a week, whereas private practice facilities can provide up to six courses,” he said.
He added that many doctors are finding themselves paying more to get the right education to keep up with rising medical costs.
Dr Kumar also said doctors are also facing difficulties in getting their own medical appointments due to lack of availability of doctors and other facilities in the private hospitals.
Dr Prakash Srivastava, professor of medicine at the Indian Institute of Technology, Jaipur, said, “The shortage of doctors is also an important factor behind the rising salaries of medical doctors.
However, the situation is changing, particularly in rural areas where the number of private medical practices are increasing.
Doctors are also finding it challenging to keep salaries at the same level as before, and are therefore facing higher cost of living.
These factors are likely to worsen as we reach the age of retirement.”